Kaikki Masterit
Pablo Riquelme | Muotoilu | Master’s Degree Programme in Spatial Design Environment

Re-Thinking the Public Library


My relationship with the Helsinki library started in 2000, when I was asked to design an “ambulant” exhibition for children’s art at the time Helsinki was the European capital of culture 2000.

Later in 2007 my office, Kuudes Kerros Oy, started to develop a new service concept and future strategy for the library network. Part of this new strategy was to design the spaces and visual qualities of the future library. My role was to develop the interior architecture, working in close cooperation with the library personnel and a design team. The main features of this new library will be openness towards the users with a more inclusive service, new functions, the re-definition of traditional services and the application of a clear visual language, which allow the users to make the most of their experience visiting the library.

I wanted to break the existing bureaucratic atmosphere by creating a cozy but functional space. People as a creative engine should be the inspiration of any attempt on redefining the role of the library; the conception of “open urban living rooms” is the direction I believe the library should take.

The creation and distribution of information is no longer prescribed to a determinate context, knowledge appears to be streaming spontaneously wherever people meet. In this scenario the library should be an important part of this creative and social process.

The public library was and will be an important cornerstone of any democratic and participative society, the challenge now is to stay in tune and to understand the needs of the people on every stage of their life.


Pablo Riquelme
Pablo Riquelme

Spatial Design

1974, Chile

+35840 776 5578